Sept. 7, 2022

#131 Designer Fund: Building the World’s First Design Centric Venture Capital Firm | Ben Blumenrose, Co-Founder & Managing Partner

#131 Designer Fund: Building the World’s First Design Centric Venture Capital Firm | Ben Blumenrose, Co-Founder & Managing Partner

In Episode #131, we explore building the world’s first design centric venture capital firm. We’re joined by Ben Blumenrose, Designer Fund’s Co-Founder and Managing Partner. We cover the Designer Fund algorithm, the core qualities of great startups, and how designers can add value as investors.


In Episode #131, we explore building the world’s first design centric venture capital firm. We’re joined by Ben Blumenrose, Designer Fund’s Co-Founder and Managing Partner. We cover the Designer Fund algorithm, the core qualities of great startups, and how designers can add value as investors.

“What are you spending your nights and weekends on and is there a way for you to make that your job? Because that's the stuff that you're really into.” – Ben Blumenrose

EPISODE GUIDE (LINKS, QUOTES, NOTES, AND BOOKS MENTIONED)

https://www.danielscrivner.com/notes/designer-fund-ben-blumenrose 

FULL TEXT TRANSCRIPT

https://www.danielscrivner.com/notes/designer-fund-ben-blumenrose-transcript 

CHAPTERS

This episode is our definitive guide to building the world’s first design centric venture capital firm. In it we cover:

  • (00:00:00) – Introduction
  • (00:02:39) – The genesis of Designer Fund
  • (00:22:31) – Demystifying design
  • (00:28:28) – Traits of designer founders
  • (00:35:02) – Sweat the details that matter
  • (00:39:23) – The Designer Fund algorithm
  • (00:44:23 – Balancing skepticism and optimism in investing
  • (00:48:47) – Core qualities of great startups
  • (00:50:32) – How designers can add value as investors


ABOUT DESIGNER FUND

Ben Blumenrose is Co-director and Managing Partner of Designer Fund, which is an early stage venture capital firm that backs founders that both recognize the power of design and are committed to getting design right from day one. Designer Fund was founded by Ben Blumenrose and Enrique Allen in 2012 after the two met at a program put on by Stanford's D school, where students use design to develop their own creative potential. When Ben and Enrique founded Designer Fund, there were few companies in Silicon Valley outside of Apple that understood the power of design to build incredible products, create a category defining brand, and ultimately forge an enduring company.

There were also no other venture capitalists with a pure design background. And yet, over the last decade Designer Fund has built an incredible venture firm. They've produced top quartile returns for their investors, beating out almost all of their peers in the market, and we're early investors in a wave of design-centric companies that have defined the last 10 years, including Stripe and Gusto. 

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ABOUT OUTLIER ACADEMY

Learn timeless lessons on work and life from iconic founders, world-renown investors, and bestselling authors. Outlier Academy is the forever school for those chasing greatness. Past guests include Gokul Rajaram of DoorDash, Scott Belsky of Benchmark and Adobe, Joey Krug of Pantera Capital, Mark Sisson of Primal Kitchen, Luke Gromen of The Forest for the Trees, and Brian Scudamore of 1-800-GOT-JUNK.

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ABOUT DANIEL SCRIVNER

Outlier Academy is hosted by Daniel Scrivner. Over the last 15 years, Daniel has led design teams at Square and Apple, turned around a $3M+ ARR SaaS business, and invested in more than 100 companies. He launched Outlier Academy in 2020 to learn from the world’s best founders, investors, authors, and peak performance experts.

Website: https://www.danielscrivner.com

Twitter: https://www.twitter.com/danielscrivner

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